Car Wash - Winter 2015 - (Page 11)

M E ET TH E BOA R D Leading from experience BILL GORRA IS President and CEO of Simoniz USA, Inc. He has dual degrees from Tufts University in chemical engineering and history. He's been in the car wash industry more than 35 years. Gorra took time to share his story and what he loves about the car wash industry. Q: Tell us how you got involved in the car wash business. A: In the late 1960s, my father started Syndet Products, a company that made detergents for the commercial car wash industry. He started, of course, in our garage, and when I graduated from college the company had grown to 14 employees. I decided to give it a shot and utilize my chemical engineering degree, and 35 years later I am still here. I've also been involved on the retail side of the business. I bought my first car wash in 1983 and over the next 10 years built or bought five more. It was the perfect opportunity to see the business from multiple perspectives, including full-service, detailing, oil change, and convenience and gas retailing. When the opportunity arose in 1998 to purchase the Simoniz brand and company, we decided to focus on the detergent business and sold the car washes - all of which are still successful today.  Q: What do you enjoy most about this industry? A: We have stayed so dedicated to the car wash industry because of the opportunity it presents, and the commitment we have from like-minded professionals who have decided to make their careers here at Simoniz USA. It's also great that this industry is big enough that you can introduce new products and services that move the needle, but at the same time you can take an idea from the drawing board to the marketplace in a reasonable amount of time. We also really enjoy and respect the car wash operator. This is still a hardworking, weather-dependent, retail environment where productivity, marketing and management have to come together. Q: Why do you serve on the ICA board of directors? A: I am serving in order to give back to this industry, and I hope that my years of experience give me something valuable to offer. It's an exciting time for the DIFM (do it for me) car appearance marketplace, with the DIY segment decreasing every year. The positive environmental impact our industry can claim and the growing frequency of use of professional car washes is only going to fuel additional growth. The ICA board of directors is a group of caring car care professionals from every end of the business: operators, equipment vendors, chemical suppliers, etc. Everyone I have met is selfless in the way they analyze our decisions, and they want what is best for our industry and our members. They have great vision and believe in the future of our industry, and I'm thankful they give their time - which we all know is our most precious commodity. BILL GORRA President and CEO Simoniz USA, Inc. EDUCATION Chemical engineering and history Tufts University EXPERIENCE 35 years in the car wash industry Q: What advice would you have for those who are new to the car wash business? A: Stay in constant contact with your customers, and keep your message fresh and relevant! All of us are being bombarded by information and offers, and we have to know how to compete with the dry cleaner, pizza house and donut shop for our customers' discretionary income. Clean, dry and shiny may not always be enough...make their experience exceptional! INTERNATIONAL CARWASH ASSOCIATION BOARD OF DIRECTORS Gary Dennis, President Fred O'Neill, Treasurer Mark Curtis, Immediate Past President Warren Davis, Vendor Vice President Brian Gleason, Vendor Vice President Jim Mulholland Mike Sobie Richard Belanger William Gorra Haji Tehrani David Begin Carl Howard Trent Walter Mark De Graaf Jaime Harris Darrin Baum WINTER 2015 | CAR WASH MAGAZINE | WWW.CARWASH.ORG 11 http://WWW.CARWASH.ORG

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Car Wash - Winter 2015

Letter from the ICA
Meet the Board
By the Numbers
Overheard Online
Seven trends affecting the future workforce
Talent development and company culture
The Affordable Care Act in action: Preparing for reporting in 2016
Still stuck in traffic
Car washes in the fast lane
Car Wash Show Europe launch a huge success
Enning, Loogman inducted to Car Wash Hall of Fame
Take a Tour
If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck…
A gentler approach to damage claims
Wash Ideas
Women in Car Wash: Linda Parker
Blast from the Past
Marketing Minute
Women in Car Wash: Mandi Brower
Ask Champ
Download It!
5 ways to build trust in a business
Top Tweets
Safety Tip
Problem Solved
Index of Advertisers
5 Things

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